Prep time: 20 minutes, plus at least 1 hour chill time for dough
Cook time: 12 minutes
Makes 4 dozen
These lemony little cookies, reminiscent of shortbread, are perfect for spring. Recipe adapted by The Bee's Kathy Morrison from Cooking Light.
Note: This dough also works as a refrigerator cookie. Alternate preparation and baking instructions are included below.
Yolks from 2 chilled hard-boiled eggs
10 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar, plus more for sprinkling
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 teaspoons grated lemon zest
1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
Press yolks through fine-mesh strainer into a small bowl.
In a large bowl, beat butter, sugar, salt and cooked egg yolk on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes, scraping sides of bowl with flexible spatula as needed. On low speed, mix in vanilla and lemon zest. Add flour and mix on low speed until just blended, about 30 seconds. Dough will be crumbly. Using spatula, press dough together into a solid mound. Chill until firm, at least 1 hour, up to overnight.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper. Roll dough into 1-inch balls and place them 1 inch apart on baking sheets. Flatten balls with the bottom of a glass that has been buttered and dipped in sugar.
Bake until centers of cookies are pale golden brown with edges slightly darker than centers, about 12 minutes, rotating baking sheets front to back and top to bottom halfway through baking.
Cool cookies on baking sheet 5 minutes; transfer cookies to wire rack to finish cooling.
For refrigerator cookies: Before chilling, compress dough into two 6-inch logs, just under 2 inches in diameter. Wrap in wax paper or plastic wrap. Chill overnight. When ready to bake, allow dough to soften slightly while preparing baking sheets. (If dough is crumbly, allow it to warm up a bit more.)
Slice dough 1/8-inch thick, place on baking sheets and sprinkle lightly with sugar. Bake at 350 degrees for about 8 minutes or until pale golden.